Where the Wild Things Are (2009, USA) C-101m. SCOPE *** D: Spike Jonze. Starring Max Records, Pepita Emmerichs, Catherine Keener, Mark Ruffalo, voices of James Gandolfini, Paul Dano, Catherine O'Hara, Forest Whitaker, Chris Cooper, Lauren Ambrose. Another off-beat, original drama from director Jonze (BEING JOHN MALKOVICH, ADAPTATION), based on an acclaimed book by Maurice Sendak. A 10-year-old boy cannot come to terms with the anger rising in him against his dysfunctional(?) family and runs away to a fantasy world, which is populated by big, furry monsters, who accept him as their king. There's tension among the group, and their interactions mirror those in the boy's real life. Touching fantasy drama is not really for kids, who will not be able to read between the lines. For adults, it's a delight. Slightly downbeat, but richly textured, heartfelt and with a wonderful, melancholy score by Carter Burwell. Co-produced by Tom Hanks and Maurice Sendak.

© Ron Altman @ www.cultfilmz.com